Article by Dražen Šimleša, RIPESS Europe

RIPESS network had the great opportunity to participate in the Nyeleni Global Forum Preparation Meeting in Rome, 10-11, June 2023. RIPESS Europe was represented by the board member, Dražen Šimleša, while Urgenci network was represented by Judith Hitchman, one of the co-coordinators of RIPESS Intercontinental.

The purpose of this meeting was to include in the food sovereignty process and structure, social movements that are close to the concept and values of food sovereignty/agroecology but have different origins and backgrounds. The meeting was a participatory quest among the existing alliance and potential new members, supporters and by-standers organisations. Movements that are nourishing and taking care of the Nyeleni process, such as Via Campesina, Urgenci, Habitat International Coalition, World Forum of Fisher Peoples, and more met with representatives from the Friends of the Earth International, TNI – Transnational Institute, FIAN International, People’s Health Movement, ETC Group. The meeting was an important milestone for the Nyeleni process since it marked an opening and inclusivity for the struggle and the general cause. Very often the phrase that was coming to everyone’s lips was “one struggle, many voices”. Many social movements from all over the world were invited to discuss the most important question of the meeting:

How do we see our contribution/input to the Nyeleni process and food sovereignty movement?

RIPESS Intercontinental offered support and contributed by emphasizing the needed solidarity in today’s world and the needed transformation of the neoliberal capitalist economy that is putting in danger the planet, small food producers, women, minorities, and all other groups that are not running the business-as-usual agenda. After working in small groups all participants agreed with the proposal of the Operational Group and Facilitation Committee of Nyeleni process to secure more space and time for each organization to have an inner consultation about the level and commitment of their involvement in the future Nyeleni process.

This new body should help the overall process, but also participate in the preparation of the next Nyéléni Global Forum 2025 which will be in India. Next to these strategic decisions, all organizations were invited to contribute capacity building, trainings, and educational sessions, RIPESS Intercontinental will organise trainings with a focus on the links between social solidarity economy and food sovereignty.

International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty (IPC)

Nyeleni: International movement for food sovereignty